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Find a food service professional near New York, NY

Find a food service professional near New York, NY

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Find a food service professional near New York, NY

99 near you

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Top 10 Food Service Professionals near New York, NY

Q & A

Answers to commonly asked questions from the experts on Thumbtack.

How much does a personal chef cost?

Hiring a personal chef usually costs anywhere from $40-$100 or more per person. Request free cost estimates from personal chefs in your area so you’ll know exactly how much it will cost to hire one for your needs. For an accurate quote, be sure to let the chefs know the number of people they’ll need to feed, what you’d like on the menu and other relevant details. 

To learn more about the factors that impact the cost to hire a personal or private home chef, read our cost guide.

How do you find a good caterer?

Reviews, interviews and menu tastings will help you find the right catering choice for your big day. Start by screening possible wedding caterers based on past reviews. If a caterer you are interested in has a review that concerns you, ask them about it; how they respond will be very telling. Next, ask about their availability for your wedding date.

If the wedding caterer is available on your date, it’s time to talk about menus and prices. Be clear about what your maximum budget is find out what choices this will allow you. Caterers may custom-create a menu for your event, or they may have menu templates within different price ranges that can guide your decision. A clear budget gives the caterer clear parameters within which to work and offer creative suggestions. Schedule a menu tasting to confirm you love your wedding menu. Once you have a menu and date, and have paid a deposit to reserve the caterer’s services, confirm additional details including when the food will be delivered to the site, what kind of service will be provided, how many servers will be onsite and for how long, and who is responsible for setup and cleanup. The more specific your contract, the fewer worries you’ll have on your wedding day. Get more smart hiring tips here.

Do you tip a wedding caterer?

Tipping 15 percent to 20 percent on a $3,000 catering bill can feel daunting — especially in light of all the other costs of throwing a wedding — but tipping your wedding caterer is standard practice. Be sure to ask your caterer about their specific policies. Many catering companies include gratuity as a line item on their bill. If tipping is not automatically included in your total, a good approach is to tip all the people involved the day of the event rather than paying one lump sum to the catering company. For each server and bartender, you can tip $20-$50, depending on how long they were onsite and whether they did exceptional work. You can also tip the chef; experts suggest $50. It’s also a good idea to tip the catering manager, the point-of-contact person who keeps the catering service running smoothly the day of your wedding, ensures all the food looks beautiful and is plentiful, and resolves any mishaps. Industry pros recommend tipping the catering manager $100-$200. If gratuity is not included and you’re tipping individuals, set aside $200-$500 in cash to be safe.

How much does wedding catering cost per person?

Wedding catering costs will always vary based on the number of guests you’re inviting, the menu you want to serve, and the way the food will be served to your guests. As you interview wedding catering companies, you’ll be presented with a cost per person for various menus. On the low end, wedding catering may cost approximately $15-$18 per person. This would include prepared food only, with no setup or service of any kind. The starting price for a simple buffet meal with minimal service typically averages $22 per person. Opting for the same menu with all organic ingredients could raise your costs to about $33 per person. A moderately upscale menu (finer ingredients, more elaborate presentation) could range from $24 to $34 per person. High-end wedding catering cost truly has no limit. Lobster, filet mignon, specialty seafood, organic ingredients — menu choices like these can boost your cost per person up to $150 and more.

How much should catering cost for a wedding?

The cost of wedding catering will reflect the level of service, the menu you choose, the luxury you desire and the number of guests you invite. Where you live also plays a major role in your wedding catering costs. The regional cost to do business and local cost of food will affect your catering bill. There is no set price for wedding catering, because each wedding and each menu is different. This is why many caterers provide a per-person price. This allows you to break down what it costs to feed each person based on the menu you want. Working with your caterer, you can adjust menu items, service level and more to accommodate your budget and guest count. Keep in mind that wedding catering costs are not just for the food. The bill reflects all the components that go into commercial food catering: a commercial kitchen, ingredients, staff, insurance, marketing and more. Here are some examples of average costs:

  • Three-course plated meal, moderately upscale, for 125 in Los Angeles: $14,000. Because of staffing costs, a true plated meal costs about twice as much as a staff-assisted buffet.
  • Buffet meal, standard menu, for 100 in Los Angeles: $5,000.
  • Per-person cost for hors d'oeuvres, dinner and nonalcoholic beverages: $24–$37, depending on menu selection, in Southern California.
  • Drop off prepared food for 50: $1,000 in North Carolina. Price does not include any service, setup or breakdown.

How do you serve food at a wedding?

Food service at your wedding will affect your catering costs and influence the atmosphere of the reception. Buffet style is more informal; plated meals are a bit fancier; family style encourages sharing. Read about the different food service styles to select your preferred wedding catering choice.

  • Buffet: Caterers can drop off prepared foods for a DIY and budget-friendly buffet option where you set everything up and food is entirely self-service. For a fuller-service buffet, the caterers set up food, oversee the buffet throughout the event, and clean up afterwards. For food only, prices per person might average $16-$18, while a service buffet may start around $20-$22 per person. Adding food stations can increase per-person costs by at least $3-$5.
  • Family style: Servers bring large platters of food to guest tables in courses. It’s less formal (and less expensive) than a plated meal, but more formal and higher-cost than a buffet. You’ll need large tables to accommodate the platters, so plan accordingly when renting furniture for the event.
  • Plated: A plated event is a formal dining experience; waitstaff serve your seated guests for each course, fill their drinks, and attend to them throughout the dinner. A plated dinner is typically the most expensive option for both food and service.
  • Food trucks: Similar to buffets, with food trucks your guests get their own food and bring it to their table. A food truck gives a relaxed and playful vibe to your reception.
  • Cocktail reception: If you don’t want a formal seated dinner, you can opt for a wide assortment of passed appetizers at an extended cocktail hour reception.

What should you look for in a caterer?

A delicious meal is a critical element of a successful wedding, with happy guests fondly remembering your fabulous wedding food. The right caterer for you will be:

  • Available: Even the best caterer is no good if they aren’t available on your wedding date. Ask early before you get your heart set on someone.
  • Affordable for you: Find a caterer that you can afford. Having a spending plan ahead of time will mean you won’t overspend on food.
  • A good personality fit: Wedding planning is stressful, so work with someone that you can get along with and communicate with easily.
  • Experienced and recommended: Ensure the company has a proven track record with events of your size and the references to back it up.
  • Transparent about money: Steer clear of shady pricing. Find a caterer who is very clear about costs and is happy to talk you through budgets and pricing options.
  • Transparent about food: Find someone who is clear about where they source their food from and where it is prepared.

How much does it cost to hire a caterer?

Catering prices depend mainly on how fancy you want the food and service to be and how many guests you’ll have. When you’re first looking to hire a caterer for your event, consider how many guests you’ll have and your total food and drink budget. The national average for event catering is $340, but catering prices can range into the thousands depending on your menu, guest count, and service.

Event catering is a broad term that covers everything from fully prepared, ready-to-eat food that the hosts plate and serve themselves to full-service, multicourse meals, including rental of linens, glassware and other items, with service staff organized by the catering company. Usually a caterer will determine cost based on the type of event you’re having, how many guests will attend, the level of service you desire, and what type of menu you’d like to have. For example, if you have a set catering budget, say $1,500, and you plan to have 50 people attend, that means you have $30 per person for food. If you have the same budget with 100 people, you have $15 per person for food. In this way, the number of people you want to attend your event and the level of food you want to serve them determines how much catering will cost.

How much should catering cost per person?

Catering prices can range from about $10 per guest on the low end to $150 or more per person on the high end. Catering costs represent the quality of food, presentation, variety, ingredients and service. But catering prices are more than the cost to cook the food that will be at your party; they also include the cost for the company to do business. Here is a simple breakdown of catering prices:

  • Menu: The food you serve your guests will directly affect the price per person. Organic ingredients, complex recipes, elaborate presentations, or high-ticket items like lobster or filet mignon all add to the cost.
  • Service: Buffet, family style, plated dinners — how you serve the food affects the cost per person. For example, a true plated meal can cost about twice the price of a staff-assisted buffet because of staffing costs. Hiring waiters, bartenders and cleanup crew will all be calculated into the per-person catering price.
  • Drinks: Providing beverages and alcoholic drinks for guests greatly increases your catering budget. Hosting an open bar can cost as much per person as the meal.
  • Rentals: Seating, plates, glassware, etc., will all have an effect on the cost per person for catering. For example, a plastic conference table that seats 10 costs about $6 to rent on average, while a wooden farmhouse table is about $80 to rent on average.
  • Business costs: Any catering cost will also include the cost for the company to do business such as insurance, employee wages, commercial kitchen space and more.
Reviews for New York food service professionals
Christina C.
Great food/great service!
ChefShainChefShain
Joe S.
Delicious food and excellent service.
AmoracoAmoraco
Alyssa M.
fabulous people, service, and food!
AmoracoAmoraco
Katarina C.
Food was great. Service also excellent.
Harvest CaterersHarvest Caterers
Kayla M.
We will definitely be hiring again, the team was great and the food was amazing. Everybody was extremely happy with the quality of the food and service. Thank you!!!!
IndulgeIndulge
Radima S.
Timely, professional service, good food, attentive and responsive. A+
Global Chefz Catering And Private Chef Services...Global Chefz Catering And Private Chef Services...
Thumbtack Customer
Fantastic! Lisa provided excellent service and amazing food. Food was fresh, very tasty, and of high quality. I'd definitely use them again!
Haute PalateHaute Palate
Nicole A.
Excellent food & Service on such short notice. (Less than 24 hours)!
Most Wanted Chef LLCMost Wanted Chef LLC
Thumbtack Customer
Amazing service and delicious food. Great presentation for our company holiday party.
Perfect Peach EventsPerfect Peach Events
Rosemary R.
I was so happy with Mirabelle, the food was delicious and service just perfect! A triumph!!!!!
Mirabell CateringMirabell Catering
Howard J.
This service is exactly what we needed JP fine foods delivers excellent quality and is a very high class service
JP Fine Foods LLCJP Fine Foods LLC
Thumbtack Customer
Chris and his crew were amazing. Food, service, personality - Chris has it all.
NY Catering ServiceNY Catering Service
Jonathan H.
Chef Stenneth and his team provided excellent service and delicious food. Highly recommended.
S.G.S Catering & Private Chef Services LLCS.G.S Catering & Private Chef Services LLC
Thumbtack Customer
This is not catering food, this is delicious, flavorful and amazing Italian upscale restaurant food! Everyone at my wedding said the food was amazing first and foremost! Everything that was served had its own amazing flavor. The service was perfect! ***** Would recommend to anyone. Thanks Lauren! It was exactly what I wanted!
Bacco Catered EventsBacco Catered Events
Danny S.
Marylyn and team delivered a spectacular service for our NYC party of around 30 people. The food was delicious and the service was great. Highly recommended!
Juste Hors D'Oeuvres and Much More, LLCJuste Hors D'Oeuvres and Much More, LLC
Michael E.
Shawana did an incredible job with her exceptional service and incredible food. Very reasonable rate and we loved the food here in our office of 75 people! We will certainly reach out again for future events.
Brooklyn Kitchen Catering & EventsBrooklyn Kitchen Catering & Events
Jillian R.
I hired NY Catering service for a cocktail party of about 50 people. Chef Chris was an ultimate professional - And his staff was extremely friendly and helpful throughout the night. The food was delicious! The guests were extremely complimentary and impressed with the quality of the food and the service of the staff. The event was wonderful and I look forward to hiring NY Catering service again in the future!
NY Catering ServiceNY Catering Service
Marty P.
Everyone that attended our holiday dinner party raved about the food that Dee's Dish prepared. Not only was the food delicious, it was delivered at the time that Dee's Dish promised. I anticipate that my wife and I will do business with Dee's Dish again when we host another large dinner party. Great food, great service.
Dee's dishDee's dish
Thumbtack Customer
Hands on, professional, great food and attentive service with smiles. An invaluable asset to my concert. Thank you, Tamara.
AmoracoAmoraco
Kathy G.
Excellent service, delicious food and perfect presentation! Thanks to Chef Chris's expertise, we had a fantastic event.
NY Catering ServiceNY Catering Service
Joel M.
Great in planning. Great food. Really great party food for my guests with generous quantity. Fantastic service staff. Very professional and friendly staff. Very happy with Amoraco and would use them again if I had a chance.
AmoracoAmoraco
Thumbtack Customer
Tamara and her staff were true professionals and the food was outstanding. I had a birthday party for about 30 people and everyone raved about the food and service. She was extremely accommodating and friendly. I highly recommend Amoraco catering!
AmoracoAmoraco
Thumbtack Customer
All of my guests loved Noel's Kitchen. The food was delicious and he had great accommodating customer service!
Robert Crawford & Associates Inc.Robert Crawford & Associates Inc.
Thumbtack Customer
The food and service from Bacco was superb in every way. Lauren and her staff catered a cocktail party in my apartment, and they were beyond professional and friendly. The food was delicious and I've never had so many compliments. Highly, highly recommend!
Bacco Catered EventsBacco Catered Events
Kesha B.
Food was really good, service was really good, I think the pricing should be discussed more in details before the day of.
Chef Qonyac CuisineChef Qonyac Cuisine
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